Thursday, September 15, 2011
Spooky South by S.E. Schlosser
Oh book, I wish I would've liked you better. I went to Barnes and Noble last weekend and picked this up from my favorite table of the year...the Halloween table. The fault in this book lies entirely in the reader. I'm sure there are many other people who would love this type of book..but it's not me. Mainly, I thought this book was going to be actual ghost stories from the south. I happen to believe in ghosts...I've had some strange experiences that have attributed to that belief. But this book wasn't what I thought it would be, hence my disappointment. What Spooky South focuses more on are folklore and urban myth type stories. Sort of like a Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark type book. Which is fine...it's just not what *I* wanted. Add to this the cheesy endings to a lot of these stories. It's always bugged me when people are telling a creepy story and it ends with something really stupid like "And you can bet that was the last time he ever did that!" For me, that just totally rips you out of the atmosphere of a good story. Having said all of that...there actually were a couple of stories in this 30 story collection that did give me the creeps. And I don't get the creeps very easily. The one's that did so were the ones that sounded like actual ghost stories. Not the ones with made up creatures and ridiculous rendezvous with "the devil himself." I think what this book had going for it more than anything though were the incredible illustrations by Paul G. Hoffman! Each story had a one page illustration and I looked forward to them with each story. They were just fantastic!! Had a wonderful southern folk art vibe to them. So while this one didn't work for me, it may work for some others. If you're into folklore (though I really didn't see how this was particularly southern folklore aside from that each story said it took place in the south) or urban myths/legends, then you might like this one. If you want a real ghost story based on history though, I'm afraid you'll have to pass this one up.